Light airs and just one race on Day Three of the Six Metre Worlds 2023 in Cowes
Conditions were extremely light on the third day of the International Six Metre World Championship in Cowes. With strong spring tides to consider the Royal Yacht Squadron Race Committee knew they had just a narrow window of opportunity to run a race during the slack water period. They postponed the race for an hour initially, but then called the teams out to the race area to await wind. Fortunately, their patience paid off and five to seven knots filled in from the south-east for just long enough to allow a single two lap race for both divisions to be completed.
With the breeze coming down the course in variable bands it was a tough day for the sailors despite the relatively benign (by Solent standards) current, which fortunately was against the boats upwind increasing the apparent wind and helping them to make progress over it. The late summer sun continued to shine and once again the fleet made a spectacular sight spread out against the Hillhead shore.
In the Open Division, race victory went to Dieter Schoen’s Momo, with Jamie Hilton’s Scoundrel second and Jan Eckert’s GinkgoToo third. In the overall Open standings Scoundrel has now moved up into first place, two points ahead of overnight leader Violeta Alvarez’ Stella, who finished sixth and now counts 18 points. Momo’s win puts her into third place, but she is tied on 25 points with Jeremy Thorp’s fourth placed Battlecry.
In the Classic Division the French were showing plenty of flair as reigning World Champion Dix Août, with Gery Trentesaux at the helm, took her third race win of the series. Dix Août’s owner Louis Heckly is instead sailing Fun this week and followed Dix Août across the line for second, their best result of the regatta so far. Mauricio Sanchez-Bella’s Titia finished third and His Majesty King Juan Carlos of Spain’s Bribon, being helmed by Ross McDonald, fourth.
Going into the day three boats were tied at the top of the Classic Division, Today’s result means that Dix Août has taken the lead by three points from Bribon, while Titia moves up into third from fourth. Patrick Sandman’s May Be VI had another good day with a fifth and moves from fifth into fourth. But for Simon Williams and his crew aboard Silvervingen a ninth in the race sees them drop from third overall to fifth, but still on equal points with May Be VI.
In the Corinthian Division for amateur crews (note – in this division each vessel may carry one professional Category 3 sailor who must not be the helmsman) the Open ranking is now being led by Philippe Durr and Rainer Muller’s Junior, who leads Reigh North’s Duclop and Bob Gatehouse’s Bravade. In the Classic Corinthian Division the overall leader if Patrick Sandman’s May Be VI, with Andy and Jan Short’s Nancy second and Thomas Kuhmann’s GER96 Hanko III third.
The minimum required number of five races have now been completed and there are three races remaining to be sailed between now and Friday 8 September. Once the sixth race is completed the single scoring discard will be introduced. The forecast for the penultimate day of racing looks promising with eight to fourteen knots from the east-south-east anticipated. Unfortunately, Friday’s forecast is very light again, so the Race Committee has announced that it will bring the start of Thursday’s racing forward half an hour to 11:00 and may elect to run all three remaining races to secure the championship.
Whilst racing may be the primary objective of this World Championship, it is also a celebration of the amazing history of the Six Metre Class. The boats participating represent almost a century of yachting history and for the owners, particularly those in the Classics, maintaining and enjoying that history and keeping the boats alive and racing is as important as the results.
Additional information about the 2023 International Six Metre World Championship, including a list of entries with details of each boat is available at 6metreworlds.com.
Provisional Top Five Open Division after five races
1st Scoundrel, USA123, Jamie Hilton – 1, 3, 7, 3, 2 = 16
2nd Stella, GBR112, Violeta Alvarez – 5, 2, 1, 4, 6 = 18
3rd Momo, SUI143, Dieter Schoen – 9, 5, 8, 2, 1 – 25
4th Battlecry, GBR89, Jeremy Thorp – 8, 4, 3, 5, 5 = 25
5th Junior, SUI77, Philippe Durr and Rainer Muller – 6, 9, 4, 1, 11 = 31
Provisional Top Five Classic Division
1st Dix Août, FRA111, Louis Heckly and Gery Trentesaux – 1, 14, 1, 4, 1 = 21
2nd Bribon, ESP16, His Majesty King Juan Carlos of Spain – 3, 12, 4, 1, 4 = 24
3rd Titia, ESP72, Mauricio Sanchez-Bella – 11, 1, 5, 7, 3 = 27
4th May Be VI, FIN51, Patrick Sandman – 9, 7, 2, 6, 5 = 29
5th Silvervingen, GBR31, Simon Williams – 7, 3, 7 , 3, 9 = 29